To Change Is To Grow

To Change Is To Grow

The only constant is change. A concept as old as the Ancient Greeks, it still applies today, in business as in life. Life, in fact, is change, from when we’re born until we die, and perhaps even after that. Everything changes, from your body, to the world around you, to the people you know, to how you’re perceived. What you know, what you don’t, your career, your family, your friends – everything is in a state of constant flux. Your subjective experience is the constant. You’ve been aware for as long as you’ve been aware.

Why, then, can change seem so difficult? You’d think we’d be well adapted to change at this point, given its omnipresence. The reason likely lies in our instinct for self-preservation; if everything seems good right now, change could mean problems. Back when we were hunter-gatherers, sudden change might literally mean no food on the table; this anxiety persists to this day. I’ve heard extraordinarily competent, confident, and capable people worry that a corporate restructuring would lead to them losing their jobs even though it was clear that:

  1. a) They were too valuable to the company to be worried about being affected
  2. b) Even if they were laid off, they could quickly find themselves another job in the same sector.

I consider myself extremely lucky; I’m able to embrace change. I even get excited about most changes, because change means I’m still alive. It’s a mentality I’d like to share with as many people as possible. To change is to grow. Every time something changes (which, again, is always), there are doors open to new opportunities. There are new challenges that will present themselves, and at first, these challenges might seem daunting, even overwhelming – once you’re through them, you’ll realize you were made of tougher stuff than you thought. Through those changes, you too will have changed, and your stronger, better self will now be more readily able to take advantage of other changes that come your way. To fear the most constant thing in our lives does us no good; embracing it allows us to embrace life itself.

This isn’t to say that change won’t at times be difficult; rather, it’s to say that if you view change as a constant, instead of as a disturbance in your otherwise orderly life, it will allow you to navigate the realities of that change more effectively. When we reject change, we give ourselves the temporary comfort of believing the order we’ve established can remain – but nothing can remain the same, because everything changes. Instead, when you look to change, see how it can make the things that are already good about your life better.

Most of this advice is personal, but on an organizational scale, the more people within your organization who are ready to handle change with a positive attitude, the more readily your organization will handle that change as a whole. You can encourage your members to embrace change with a change management speaker, someone who has gone through incredible change, embraced it, and grown stronger as a result.